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Durbin Asks Burris to Resign; Burris: 'Nope'

3:35 PM, Feb 24, 2009 • By MARY KATHARINE HAM
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Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) met with rogue Sen. Roland Burris (D-Ill.) this morning for about 45 minutes, but was rebuffed by Bold Blago's protege when he asked him to resign:

"I told him under the circumstances that I would consider resigning," Durbin told reporters. "He said he would not resign."

Durbin was clearly frustrated by the meeting. He recalled how he had advised Burris not to accept the appointment in the first place. "My advice obviously doesn't move him," Durbin said.

"The people of Illinois have grown weary of this stuff," he added. "They want this Blagojevich burlesque to end."

Questions about Burris' contact with the Blagojevich family, in which he was asked to raise money for the governor, have had Illinois newspapers and politicians alike calling for the newly minted senator's resignation for several weeks. Burris gave no comment as he left the meeting.

If, in the grand tradition of flagrantly corrupt Illinois politicians, Burris grandstands instead of resigning, the fight will go back to the Illinois legislature again, much to the delight of political reporters:

If Burris quits, Gov. Quinn will appoint a Democrat on a temporary basis-someone, Quinn told me, who would be a caretaker. Quinn then would push the Illinois legislature to change the law for a special election.

Quinn has called on Burris to quit.

I asked Quinn Monday when we talked what he would do if Burris did not resign. He said the state lawmakers could pass a special election law effectively shortening Burris' tenure. That could be subject to a constitutional challenge.

Rep. Bobby Rush's race card could not be reached for comments, as its schedule is already full for the next week.